Oct. 28 (UPI) — The Maryland man charged with killing five people at the Capital Gazette newspaper offices last year pleaded guilty on Monday.
Jarrod Ramos, 39, pleaded guilty in Anne Arundel County Circuit Court to all 23 counts of first-degree murder, attempted murder, assault and weapons charges he faced in the case and Circuit Court Judge Laura Ripken accepted his guilty plea, the Capital Gazette reported.
Jury selection for the second phase of the trial to determine whether Ramos will be held criminally responsible for the shooting will be held on Wednesday.
Shortly after the shooting, Ramos pleaded not guilty, arguing that he was not criminally responsible due to a mental disorder that kept him from understanding the illegality of his actions.
In response to Ramos’ not criminally responsible plea, Circuit Court Judge Laura S. Ripken ordered the trial to be broken into two proceedings.
The first would set out to determine whether he committed the crimes and the second would focus on whether he lacked the “substantial capacity” to appreciate the criminality of his conduct.
Ramos had a longstanding dispute with the Capital Gazette over a 2011 article in the paper that detailed a harassment charge a woman had filed against him.
Authorities said he sent threatening letters to the paper before arriving at the news offices on June 28, 2018 and opening fire on employees.